Wednesday, January 04, 2006


i did pull out the chapter in progress today and a notebook, some census reports, old newspaper cutouts, two interviews, and a couple of articles. i set it all on the bed beside me and watched and waited for it to assemble itself into a brilliant chapter. i got so engrossed that i fell asleep from 6 to 9 while waiting. now that i look over, i see that it is still just a disjointed pile taking up more than its half of the bed. that statistical abstract of louisiana is particularly mocking me as i keep opening and closing it to no avail. i have this incredible feeling of tension--as if these sources are willing me to put them together in a new and insightful way right now, dammit!--and i want to pounce upon the keyboard and type something profound that validates all those rumors that i hear about myself in the department. something at once so groundbreaking, so brilliant, so original that i actually feel good about it (and not just the "you really thought that was good?" feeling i usually get when i read comments on my work). i am so scared that they are moments away from finding out that i'm an exceptionally lucky, procrastinating fraud!

but, alas, it's just a draft, and a soon-to-be-due one at that. and, since my advisor's other brilliant PhD student is meeting with her and turning in work, i need to get my ass on the ball.

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Revelations and ruminations from one southern sistorian...